Disappointed in my clinical rotation..

  1. 0
    I've started my clinical rotation in medicine, and I'm really disappointed in the unit i've been placed in. All my friends are in hospital with a variety of seriously ill, acute patients. My medicine floor is mostly older adults, with CHF, pneumonia, etc. I'm not trying to say that these patients are any less valuable or anything like that, but I hope to work in the ICU or emergency when I graduate, and I would do anything to get more learning opportunities than will be available on my floor. How can I get the most out of my rotation?

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  2. 22 Comments...

  3. 15
    Well, first off do not complain. The type of patient you are describing comprise the bulk of ER and ICU patient populations. (In other words, it ain't all 'Life in the ER'). You can learn a heck of a lot regarding time management, assessment and common medications. New grads seldom get hired into critical care/ ED. So become proficient at caring for the type of patient presented to you.

    Seriously, the LAST thing you want to do is complain about the 'quality' of patient assignment in clinicals. (Not saying you have- just a word to the wise!)
  4. 5
    Out of curiosity, what semester are you in? I am in my last semester and have been on various floors and these type of patients comprise the bulk of what I have seen. There are many learning opportunities with these patients.
  5. 5
    In addition to what meanmaryjean stated:

    Get the most out of your clinical rotation by being objective; use the nursing process to understand and care for your patients; learn about prioritizing and planning for your patients; make yourself available for learning opportunities such as education/teaching the patient about their illness, discharge planning, care coordination, if that is utilized on the unit you are on; you will need a good grasp of that in your nursing practice no matter where you go.
    psu_213, sharpeimom, RunBabyRN, and 2 others like this.
  6. 9
    Get used to it, traumas don't happen all of the time. 90% of patients will be older with CHF, pneumonia, COPD, Renal failure, DKA, A-fib or some other chronic condition.

    You do realize it is VERY hard to get an ICU or ED job right out of school right? Like close to 0 unless you can snag a residency that hundreds apply for....
  7. 1
    Take every placement as a learning opportunity. You get out of it what you put in. Sure it's not as "glamorous" as the ER or ICU but like the others have said, these are the people you will be largely dealing with.
    RunBabyRN likes this.
  8. 2
    You will see a lot of pneumonia, CHF, etc in ER. And never under estimate how quickly an older person with pneumonia can turn on you.
    RunBabyRN and That Guy like this.
  9. 2
    But med-surg is where you gain valuable skills that will allow you to work in the ICU or ER in the future. You have to start low and build up. It's HIGHLY unlikely you're going to go from nursing student to critical care nurse. You need experience first
    RunBabyRN and loriangel14 like this.
  10. 4
    Quote from robdob
    I've started my clinical rotation in medicine
    No, you are doing a nursing clinical. Not medicine (unless you are a med student?)

    Quote from robdob
    How can I get the most out of my rotation?
    By being curious, by looking up every medication you run across, all of your patients' comorbidities, and honing your assessment skills. By talking to your patients. By watching nurses who do their work well. By paying attention. Asking this question is a good place to start
  11. 1
    Really? I think we all get that this is a nursing student. Next semester I do a nursing clinical rotation on medicine, I don't think we need to get not picky.

    My advice, learn as much as you can you never know when things will go downhill on medicine. I was actually on our medicine wing for part of my clinicals this semester we experienced someone having autonomic dysreflexia. It may seem mundane but there is a lot to learn and do there.
    loriangel14 likes this.

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